Fashion History: The Cone Bra

Madonna donned the infamous cone bra during her 1990 Blonde Ambition tour. Designed by Jean Paul Gaultier, the cone bra epitomized his provocative aesthetic, giving him his “enfant terrible” reputation.

Gaultier took inspiration from the vintage Perma-Lift bullet bra created in the 1940s. These pointy brassieres were often worn by the famous movie actresses of the day and started the popular “sweater girl” look.

An obvious sign of sexuality, Madonna took this concept to the brink in her famous 1990 music tour by making it popular to wear underwear as outwear. Now More than 20 years later, Madonna has reprised her most famous costume for her MDNA tour.

Sources: NYMagTheStyleNotebook, BulletBra.org

Images: InStyle, Flickr, Huffington Post, BulletBra.org

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Word of the Day: Haute Couture

Haute couture is a term that gets tossed around a lot in the fashion world. Even well-known brands and Web sites, like Juicy Couture and HauteLook, borrow their names from the words. But what is the true meaning of haute couture?

haute cou·ture \ˌōt-ku̇-ˈtu̇r\: the houses or designers that create exclusive and often trend-setting fashions for women

Haute couture is a French word that translates to “high fashion” or “high sewing.” Haute couture is specially made for an individual and typically involves lavish materials and countless hours of work. The  birthplace of haute couture, France protects the term under law and requires designers or houses meet several criteria to qualify as couture. But since the rest of the world doesn’t police the term, you’ll frequently see it used to describe garments and brands that are mass produced. A handful of designers (the likes of Chanel, Valentino, Christian Dior, Jean Paul Gaultier and Givenchy) hold couture shows in Paris each Spring and Fall season. And while the couture industry has struggled over the years, more and more people are working to preserve and promote the craft and its stunning creations.

Image source: Style.com